11th Annual Seonghwa Memorial Festival
Photo credit FFWPU-USA
For the last 11 years, the Seonghwa Ministry of the Los Angeles Family Church has been dedicated to celebrating and honoring ascended family and community members. It began in 2008 with a voluntary act by Kenny and Mitsuko Oiwa. Since then, many volunteers have joined the efforts to run the ministry which is supported by local community pastors.
On Saturday evening, November 9, families gathered at the Los Angeles Family Church chapel for the 11th Annual Seonghwa Memorial Festival, which was beautifully decorated with flowers and an offering table full of fruit. Pasquale Santoro emceed the program and recited the words of Rev. Dr. Sun Myung Moon and Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon on the significance of the Seonghwa ceremony. Rev. Mark Tengan, senior pastor of the Los Angeles Family Church, gave a testimony about his wife’s ascension and how real the spiritual experiences with loved ones are.
A slideshow was presented next, projecting the names and photos of the ascended members, after which participants each put a flower on the altar. Each year, participants express how these annual memorial festivals make them think about how they should live the rest of their lives and what they would like to leave behind.